Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Raise, Call, and Raise Again

If you mortals can't even get along within your own country, then Zeus help you when it comes to that "World Peace" thing certain groups are always blathering on about. Take a look at this item here

A judge from Georgia, presumably one of America's more progressive states, pardoned a woman who had been executed over 60 years ago. Now, I'm obviously all for justice, but was something like this really worth the time and money put into it? Does Georgia not have other ill-charged prisoners languishing in prison? A quick look at crime statistics shows that Atlanta has a murder rate 4.52 times the National Average and an overall violent crime rate 3.30 times the National Average.

That sounds like a pressing concern. More so than dredging up old crimes which may or may not have been prosecuted correctly.

But if you read a little further into the article, you can see a variable that seems consistent with a lot of the problems you mortals keep running into: The exonerated criminal was a different color than some of the other people. Is this why so much energy went into these proceedings? I could have sworn that America prided itself on racial harmony, and being a melting pot and all that rot. How on earth can all you mortals “just get along” if people are going to be constantly reminding each other of how different you are?

It seems that the person behind all of the hoopla was Charles McElveen, the great-great-nephew of the accused. Great-great-nephew? Is there any person, besides royalty, who can even identify who their great-great-aunt is, let alone spearhead a movement to have her good name restored to the book of the ages? Doesn’t this guy have a job or a family or something more important he should be attending to? What an arrogant human, to decide that all aspects of his life were so perfect and in order that he could waste his and elected officials’ precious time rehashing events that occurred in 1945?

McElveen goes on to say that people should let this be an example to people living with the evils of segregation to “come forward and right the wrongs of the past”. No, I may not be omniscient, but I’m no dummy. I did my homework, and I know that America passed a series of laws called Civil Rights Acts in 1871, 1875, 1957, 1960, 1964, and 1968, which, in essence, have already righted the wrongs of the past. According to this article, however, this is not good enough for some people, and consequently they want the past re-examined on a case-by-case basis. How supercilious! Should the descendants of the Etruscans drag their cases before the modern Italian court to “right the wrongs” perpetrated against them by the ancient Romans? Should the Venetians, the Tibetans, the Cherokee, the Mayans?

Where should one draw the line?

If the woman was truly innocent, (and the details are sketchy at best, since all persons involved in the case are long dead), then it is an injustice that she had been executed for a crime she didn’t truly commit. Although, she’s not truly innocent, either, for she did kill the guy in question, just not in the manner described by the 1945 case. Regardless of her intent, a man is dead by her hands, so that doesn’t completely exonerate her. Nevertheless, the matter here doesn’t seem to be actual justice, but socio-political retribution. A man, living three generations after the event, is so alienated from his own society that the only way he can feel a sense of self-satisfaction is to dig around and fabricate a “cause” to get behind. And what a cause at that! What American official in his right mind would do anything but bow to this man’s request? The race card had been played, and no one was walking away from this table.

So while Atlanta attempts to deal with its rising crime rates, one man with an axe to grind is given the undivided attention of the mayor, the DA, the parole board and the media so that he may sleep a little easier at night. It would not surprise me in the least to learn that McElveen’s next course of action is to sue the descendants of the jury for wrongfully condemning his great-great-aunt. He’d probably win, too.

Foolish Mortals.


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